Gorf is an arcade game released in 1981 by Midway Mfg., whose name was advertised as an acronym for "Galactic Orbiting Robot Force". It is a multiple-mission fixed shooter with five distinct modes of play, essentially making it five games in one. It is well known for its use of synthesized speech, a new feature at the time.
The player controls a spaceship that can move left, right, up and down around the lower third of the screen. The ship can fire a single shot (called a "quark laser" in this game), which travels vertically up the screen. Unlike similar games, where the player cannot fire again until his existing shot has disappeared, the player can choose to fire another shot at any time; if the previous shot is still on screen, it disappears.
Gorf consists of five distinct "missions", each with its own patterns of enemies. The central goal of each mission is to destroy all enemies in that wave, which takes the player to the next mission. Successfully completing all five missions will increase the player's rank and loop back to the first mission, where play continues on a higher difficulty level. The game continues until the player loses all their lives. The player can advance through the ranks of Space Cadet, Space Captain, Space Colonel, Space General, Space Warrior, and Space Avenger, with a higher difficulty level at each rank. Along the way, a robotic voice heckles and threatens the player, often calling the player by his current rank (for example, "Some galactic defender you are, Space Cadet!"). Some versions also display the player's current rank via a series of lit panels in the cabinet.
Gorf is well known for introducing or popularizing two new features to the video game market. Its most notable feature is its robotic synthesised speech, powered by the Votrax speech chip.
Gorf was one of the first games to allow the player to buy additional lives before starting the game. Most games offer a predetermined number of lives (usually 3) and allow the player to earn additional lives throughout the game. Gorf, which was usually set to offer two lives per coin, allows the player to insert extra coins to buy up to seven starting lives.
The underlying hardware platform for Gorf allowed arcade operators to easily swap the pattern, CPU and RAM boards with other similar games, such as Wizard of Wor. Only the game logic and ROM boards are specific to each game.
Gorf was originally intended to be a tie-in with Star Trek: The Motion Picture, but when the game designers read the film's script, they realized that the concept would not work as a video game. Even so, the player's ship bears a passing resemblance to the Starship Enterprise viewed from above.
Although game responds satisfactorily, there is poor (choppy) or fragmented sound. Good game from the 80's but bad sound. How to correct this? I don't know...
August 7, 2017 Subject:
Hi. Was a great, and I mean great!, online game until the below mentioned error started. IT's still getting hung up during the emulator launch. =(
July 11, 2017 Subject:
It hangs up at 0% loading. Any ideas?
April 19, 2016 Subject:
How to play
To play the game, click on the image with the power symbol, make sure you enable the sound (once the software has loaded).
1. Press '6' key once for 3 ships, twice for 6 ships
2. Press the '1' key for one player (haven't tried two)
3. Then use the arrow keys to move your ship around
4. Press the 'ctrl' key to shoot
Can't review the game or see if it stands up to my memories because there is no fire button, although the arrow keys appear to work to move my ship around.
February 20, 2016 Subject:
To the above user/
If you haven't been able to play yet heres what you do.Press "6" then press at screen "1" for One player start.
Great game and brings back loads of memories! and I spent a fortune on this in the Arcades.
One thing where is the speech?
February 14, 2016 Subject:
- How Do I Move or Shoot? (GORF!)
I can not move my little space-ship dude nor can I shoot at all!
- I don't see any instructions... I have unsuccessfully tried: cursor, letters on keyboad (ANY of Them), arrows on Number-board, actual arrow-keys.
The arrow keys work for moving the cursor around NOW in HERE. But HOW Do I MOVE/SHOOT and PLAY this Game?
Also I can Not chose a Rating as I have yet to play the game.
thanks! Rhis was my all-time Favorite game as a young teenager to be! (YAY Midway!)
and to this website: HELP, Please.
October 7, 2015 Subject:
If you liked Galaxian, Space Invaders, you will love this game. Lots of fun, and im not spending my quarters this time.